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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

National Biodefense Science Board Members

The National Biodefense Science Board (NBSB) is a federal advisory committee that provides advice and guidance to the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and to the HHS Secretary on preventing, preparing for, and responding to adverse health effects of emergencies. The board has 13 voting members with a broad range of expertise in science, medicine, and public health.


Prabhavathi Fernandes, PhD
Chair, National Biodefense Science Board

Dr. Prabhavathi Fernandes has more than 35 years of pharmaceutical discovery, development and management experience in large pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. She obtained her undergraduate training in India, worked at the University of Ghent, Belgium in Immunochemistry and then received her Ph.D. in Microbiology from Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia. After post-doctoral fellowships working on bacterial cell membranes and in Clinical and Public Health Microbiology, she chose a
career focused on pharmaceutical discovery and development.   Learn More >>

Picture of Prabhavathi Fernandes 
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National Biodefense Science Board

  • This page last reviewed: November 01, 2021